HarvestPlus Nigeria in pursuit of its objectives for 2015, which include dissemination of improved Vitamin A cassava stems to over 700,000 farmers across the country, has presented cassava stems for planting and multiplication to over 3,000 farmers selected from the Ikpa Nung Asang clan made up of villages in Ikot Abasi Local Council Area, Akwa-Ibom State, and Ukwuani communities in Delta State.
Addressing the farmers at the two events, the Country Manager of HarvestPlus Nigeria Mr, Paul Ilona, said: “HarvestPlus is happy to reach out to farmers wishing to invest into the Vitamin A cassava value chain. This is because your coming on board has immense implication on the general health of our people and the economy. Without agriculture, there is no nation.” He advised the farmers to take advantage of the initiative and further trainings to be given by HarvestPlus and its partners to increase their knowledge of agriculture as business, with a view to increasing their scale and yield while at the same time lowering their cost of production.
In his speech, the Paramount Ruler of the Ikpa Nung Asang clan, HRM Celestine Udia, thanked HarvestPlus and HEMADEP for the initiative. He promised that the farmers in Ikpa Nung Asang clan would make good use of the stems. “We will plant and eat Vitamin A cassava because of its health benefits. We will also work with HarvestPlus and HEMADEP to train women and youth in our communities on small-scale investment in Vitamin A cassava business to ensure reduction in poverty and creation of jobs among our rural women and youth,” he said.
Human Empowerment and Development Project (HEMADEP) and Positive Influence Global Resources Foundation are HarvestPlus’ partners in Akwa-Ibom and Delta States responsible for the initiative.
Source: The Guardian, 11th April 2015